Last month I wrote that the US Airways card from Barclays is not going away with the American – US Airways merger. That was based on comments from Barclaycard’s managing director of co-brand partnerships.
Today Citibank confirmed the same — that they will be the exclusive issuer of new American AAdvantage cards once the US Airways and American frequent flyer programs are combined in 2015.
Bank of America and Barclays will still service their existing cardmembers for the time being, but won’t be able to issue new cards.
American and Citi made the announcement formally today (I haven’t yet found the release online) that following the integration of American’s and US Airways’ programs Citi will be the exclusive co-brand card issuer.
That was never really much in doubt, American and Citi have partnered since 1987 and Citi had a much bigger installed cardmember base and more resources in its US card operation than Barclaycard.
The Citi Executive card, which they’re getting really aggressive in promoting, comes with lounge access for American lounges and now also provides access to US Airways lounges as well. As the exclusive card offering American lounge access currently, not only does the American Express Platinum card lose access after March 22 but it seems my hoped-for workaround Priority Pass Select is losing access, too.
A year ago I predicted Citibank Will Remain the Issuer of American Airlines Credit Cards After the US Airways Merger. I didn’t see the viability in any bank taking that away from Citi. And that’s basically what happened. The only twist — not that surprising as it’s effectively what happened when US Airways and America West merged, but I wouldn’t have explicitly bet on it — is the continued servicing of existing cardmembers into the future by incumbent issuers of US Airways co-brand cards.